Norton Cautions: Don't Invite Online Bogeymen, Zombie Computers and Bewitching Scams Into Your Home

This Halloween, consumers may run into more online tricks than treats

Oct 21, 2010, 00:01 ET from Norton

CULVER CITY, Calif., Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ --


Halloween themed e-mails are being used to disguise online scams, often with the promise of fun, free and "too good to be true" offers of gifts and other spooky goodies. To date, Norton has witnessed e-mails advertising jackpots, sweepstakes, gift cards, e-cards, personalized gifts, online contests, and even free print products and costumes.

As if ghosts, goblins and ghouls weren't scary enough, cyber criminals know that with Halloween coming up, people are looking for last minute tips to make that night extra special. By playing on people's natural curiosity, these scammers are able to trick people into clicking on spam, giving up access to their computers and allowing them to steal their personal information.

Below are some of the subject lines being used in the latest spam messages:

  • Subject:"xxxxx" Halloween Series Campaign Vol1

  • Subject: Halloween Treat Bags, Home Decorations, and More

  • Subject: Open this! $1 Million Prize

  • Subject: Halloween Special! Up to 85% off ink and toner

  • Subject: Halloween E-card - no cost

  • Subject: Low Price Sexy Halloween Costumes SALE !!! Free Shipping , Free Gift

Norton expects these types of scams to increase in the next week as Halloween approaches.


Norton experts are on-hand to share tips with users on how they can protect themselves from these and other online horrors, including:

  • Protect your computer from becoming a living zombie! – 73% of U.S. residents have been victims of cybercrime and the most common attacks are rooted from zombie "botnet" attacks. These attacks allow cybercriminals to take over your computer and use it to create spam or launch attacks on other computers – without you even knowing it! Use a reputable online security software to let you know when you're about to click on a toxic link.

  • Watch out for e-mails and activity from beyond the grave! - Cybercriminals can hack into long-dormant e-mail and social network accounts from those who have died, sending spam and "poisoned" links, seemingly from six feet under. Contact the service provider or website to report these grave robbers.

  • Perform at-home computer exorcisms! - Evict viruses, worms and Trojans from your possessed computer with Norton Power Eraser, a free tool.


Go to our blog ( for more information and to see examples of Halloween scams/spam


Check out our "Guides to Scary Internet Stuff" - which present the horrors of online threats in easily-digestible, fun-to-watch videos:


Raw, localized data from 20 top U.S. cities highlighting what people are afraid of, the bad behaviors they admit to engaging in themselves, and the scary percentages of people who have already been victimized by cybercrime


Interviews with Norton security experts available upon request


Gerritt Hoekman

Edelman for Norton